Welcome to the Office of Professional Preparation and Partnerships in The College of Education and Human Development (COEHD). COEHD is committed to preparing culturally efficacious educators and professionals, who are knowledgeable, community-based, and professional. We invite you to review the COEHD’s Culturally Efficacious Agents of Change Conceptual Framework , which demonstrates our pledge to diversity, as well as educational and social justice.

Office of Professional Preparation and Partnerships Goals: To increase candidate diversity and success as well as provide oversight of our accredited programs. These two goals are aligned with UTSA’s Bold Destination One of becoming a Model for Student Success with COEHD’s Mission, Vision, and Core Values.

UTSA COEHD ranks third statewide in the production of Latino teachers. Recognitions include NCTQ and Discover Early Childhood Education.

About Professional Preparation and Partnerships

At UTSA, we are committed to our school district partners throughout the San Antonio area. Our teacher candidates have the opportunity to develop their skills, gain experience, and even make mistakes while learning from experienced professionals. Our teacher candidates develop networks and are exposed to potential employers so that when they enter the classroom, they are ready from the first day. Our highly recruited teacher candidates are employed in school districts across the State of Texas and beyond.

The Texas Education Agency reports that our five-year teacher retention rate is above the state average. Our diverse teacher candidates are well-prepared to work with diverse students, including English Learners and special populations; and are prepared to integrate technology into their practices.

Our Certification Center sees each student as an individual with a unique set of goals. Our mission is to help students realize their goals in a timely manner by providing accurate information and the necessary support to fulfill UTSA degree requirements and State Board for Educator Certification (SBEC) teacher certification requirements. Students are encouraged to initiate and maintain contact with an academic advisor in the Education Center in order to stay informed of certification and graduation requirements.

Pride Points

  • Augmenting support and services to school districts in the San Antonio region through innovative programming including the nationally recognized Dual Language Partnership with the San Antonio ISD, with which we engage collaboratively in prioritizing research-driven pedagogy, instruction, and practices for dual language settings. In accordance with UTSA’s legacy as a community-serving institution, this partnership strives for authenticity, engagement, and reciprocity, capitalizing on the collective assets brought by school district personnel, UTSA faculty/staff, parents, and community stakeholders.
  • South Bexar Urban School Leaders Collaborative (USLC) Cohort – donor-funded program aimed at preparing equity-conscious principals for historically underserved settings (e.g., SAISD, Edgewood ISD).
  • Streamlining teacher preparation degree programs (Equity and Education degree) which create options for students to choose either a bilingual or ESL track and reorganize/consolidate curriculum to reduce degree credit requirements (now 120 credit hours). We anticipate that this will address critical skill needs and the teacher labor market.
  • Working with City Ed Partners and US Prep to facilitate a more rigorous and meaningful clinical teacher experience that includes impactful mentoring and compensated, yearlong residencies.
  • Collaboration with CAST Teach High School in Northside ISD where HS students earn college credit and take educator preparation courses at UTSA.
  • The Signature Teacher Residency: We are working with several school districts (Edgewood ISD, Harlandale ISD, Northside ISD, Northeast ISD, San Antonio ISD, Somerset ISD, and East Central ISD) to implement paid residencies for our clinical teachers. These partnerships require that we address teacher preparedness and shortages through shared governance.
  • UTSA’s Dual Credit Teacher Pathway initiatives: We are working with three school districts (North East ISD, SAISD, and Northside ISD) to implement a dual credit pathway for high school students to enter into teacher education programs. At the moment we’re trying to strengthen these partnerships so that we can maximize the number of high school students who complete the program and actually enter into our teacher education program.
  • For Academic Year 2022-2023 the State Board for Educator Certification rated UTSA "Accredited-Probation."

The OPPP supports students pursuing certification and licensure by overseeing accredited programs, and by creating and sustaining partnerships with school districts, community and business entities, hospitals, and other industries.

If you are interested in pursuing a degree or certificate that leads to certification and/or licensure, please follow these links:

Educator Preparation (Certification) and Licensure Programs Offered

Educator Certification

  • Undergraduate (60+ Hours) (initial)
  • Bilingual & ESL specialists

Accelerated Certification (Post-Bac)

  • Completed Baccalaureate in another field (computer science, Math, English, etc.)
  • Secondary (7-12 Grade) (computer science, Math, English Language Arts, etc.)
  • All level (Art, Music, PE, special Ed.)

Graduate & Professional

  • Master's Degree with Teacher Certification
  • School Counselor, Reading Specialist, Principal, Superintendent
  • Master's degree + Bilingual and ESL Generalists

Advanced Professional

  • Certification & Licensure
  • Behavior Analyst, Professional Counselor, School Psychologist, Dietetics

The OPPP supports UTSA’s Bold Futures Initiative and COEHD’s partnership initiatives for optimizing opportunities, transforming lives, and creating endless possibilities for learners, faculty, staff, and community alike. The OPPP ensures that our students and graduates have the appropriate preparation and field practice experiences for attaining their respective certification and/or licensure as well as that our graduates achieve their career/employment goals. Developing and sustaining educational partnerships with school districts, community and business entities, clinics, hospitals, and others are key in supporting the preparation of our students.

In addition to UTSA’s Southern Association Accreditation of Colleges and Schools (SACS), the COEHD is proud to have several national and/or state-accredited programs that demonstrate that we are meeting, or exceeding standards required for certification and/or licensure. In selecting your program of study leading to certification and/or licensure, we want you to feel confident that you will meet the required standards. Figure 1 provides an overview of the various accreditations (or verified sequences) that are offered in COEHD:

Accreditations Department Level
Council for Accreditation of Counseling and Related Educational Programs (CACREP) Counseling Graduate
Educator Preparation Program (Texas Education Agency and Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board)

Educational Leadership and Policy Studies 

Bicultural-Bilingual Studies


Interdisciplinary Learning and Teaching

Undergraduate / Graduate
National Association for Early Childhood (NAEYC) ILT: Early Childhood and Elementary Education Graduate
National Association of School Psychology (NASP) Educational Psychology Graduate
OTHER CREDENTIALING (Verified/Recognized Programs) Department Level
Association for Behavior Analysis International (BCBA; Verified Course Sequence) Educational Psychology (ABA certificate) Graduate
Association for Behavior Analysis International (BCBA; Verified Course Sequence) Educational Psychology (Behavior Analysis) Graduate
International Literacy Association National Recognition with Distinction ILT: Reading Specialist Graduate
Urban School Leaders Collaborative Educational Leadership and Policy Studies Graduate


UTSA has partnered with the Northside ISD and the CAST Network to co-create a funded residency for secondary teacher candidates. The UTSA-NISD Signature Teacher Residency program at CAST Teach High School provides cohorts of secondary certification candidates with extended opportunities to teach, learn, and interact with high school students, teachers, and administrators. Participation in the UTSA-NISD Signature Teacher Residency at CAST Teach High School requires a one-year commitment.

Teacher Residents are paired with carefully selected mentor teachers, participate in district-led professional learning sessions, record and critically reflect on their instructional practices, are eligible for employment opportunities with the district, and develop a strong network of support through interactions in residency seminars led by dedicated residency faculty. During the clinical year, residents follow the district teachers' calendar, co-planning, and co-teaching with their mentor. Residency graduates are ready to lead their own classroom and fully participate in the NISD community as culturally efficacious educators from day one. They are invited to continue collaboration with their residency cohort, and after at least 3 years as teachers of record, are eligible to be considered as residency mentor teachers.

Applicants have preferably participated in the pre-clinical UTSA-NISD residency program, though any secondary candidate may apply.

Application process for all UTSA-NISD Residency programs:

  1. Teacher Candidate completes and submits an application to UTSA (Click here for the UTSA-NISD Signature Teacher Residency Program Application)
  2. UTSA residency committee reviews applications and makes referrals to NISD
  3. NISD conducts interviews and contacts UTSA with recommendations for accepted residents
  4. UTSA informs candidates of district decisions
  5. Candidate reviews and signs letter of acceptance and returns signed agreement form to UTSA

Contact for UTSA-NISD Residency information:

Dr. Jennifer Swoyer
Assistant Professor of Instruction

Have an inquiry about our program?

We appreciate your interest in Professional Preparation and Partnerships and extend our warmest welcome to you.